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A new report by Human Rights Watch urges China to stop using electroshock therapy to “convert” LGBT people

LGBT people in China are still being subject to medication, forced confinement and electroshock therapy in an effort to “convert” them into heterosexuality.

The shocking details have emerged following a report published by Human Rights Watch yesterday, which revealed that this “treatment” is occurring in public hospitals and private clinics.

The research interviewed 17 people who underwent conversion therapy, under intense family and social pressure, alongside family members and activists.

China officially decriminalised homosexuality in 1997 and, in 2001, the Chinese Society of Psychiatry removed homosexuality from its list of mental “disorders”. It does not have a law that protects individuals from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, however.

Despite this, the report states that: “Chinese society continues to strongly favour children who can pass on their family name. For individuals who are gay or lesbian, this creates intense family pressure to enter heterosexual marriages and have children.”

None of the participants interviewed for the report who were subjected to conversion therapy reported any change to their sexual orientation following their “treatment”.

The report concludes by stating, “As homosexuality is not an illness, there is no need for a cure.”

Read the report in full here.

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